BYU quarterback Zach Wilson quickly has become a favorite NFL draft target of many 49ers fans, as the subpar play by Jimmy Garoppolo has led many to begin researching potential replacements.
It had been reported that 49ers vice president of player personnel Adam Peters had scouted both Wilson and Alabama quarterback Mac Jones in person, and during an appearance on KNBR, general manager John Lynch confirmed that Peters has gone to see Wilson play this season.
“Adam did go out to Boise State to watch a Boise State-BYU game,” Lynch said Friday (h/t KNBR's Jacob Hutchinson). “That seemed to have garnered a lot of attention. We’re doing our jobs. You prepare for everything.”
Wilson has lit up college football in 2020 and has begun to be mentioned among the top QB prospects available in next year’s draft. Through eight games this season, Wilson has thrown for 2,512 yards, 22 touchdowns and just two interceptions, while completing 75.1 percent of his passes. In addition, Wilson has rushed for 158 yards and eight touchdowns.
In the game Peters attended in Boise, Wilson completed 22 of 28 passes for 360 yards and three touchdowns and no interceptions in a 51-17 romp. The Cougars do also two additional top 200 prospects in next year's class, in offensive tackle Brady Christensen and defensive lineman Khyiris Tonga.
Garoppolo hasn’t looked like the same quarterback in 2020, most likely due to the ankle injury he suffered in Week 2 against the New York Jets. He was placed on injured reserve in Week 9 after suffering another high ankle sprain during a loss in Seattle against the Seahawks.
The 49ers haven’t given any indication that the team will be moving on from Garoppolo after the season, and with a higher pick in this year’s draft than expected due to the team’s struggles, it is understandable why Lynch and Peters would want to do their due diligence on all the quarterbacks available.
Wilson likely will be on the shortlist at the very least in April’s draft if the 49ers do decide to pursue other options for a franchise quarterback.